Saturday, July 07, 2012

4th of July 2012 Recap

The 4th of July is one of my favorite holidays.  It's the day that we remember that our Founding Fathers, George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and Benjamin Franklin all gathered in Philadelphia and held the first cookout in the United States.

Almost every year we go to Kingsville, Maryland for their 4th of July parade.  It's earlier in the day, around 11am, so there's plenty of time to get home, cookout, read the Declaration of Independence, drink a beer or 10, and watch a neighbor shoot off fireworks.

This year we got to Kingsville, which is just northeast of Perry Hall, around 9:10 am.  Surprisingly, with the parade still two hours away, the streets are lined with people waiting.  We park at St. John's Church and got a spot backing to the road, so I backed up, put up the canopy and lift-gate on my Pilot, spread out the chairs, and put up my anti-O'Malley signs to deter any potential Democrats from asking me to vote for them in the fall.  Fortunately for me, I can tell them I don't live in Baltimore County.  But then, of course, the knuckleheads all still insist on handing me a brochure with some information that they're sure I'll find interesting.  My recycling bin will find it more interesting.

It was a hot one on Wednesday.  Already in the mid-90's by 9:30-ish.  The parade started with it usual montage - police cars, the leader being a Baltimore County Sherrif's car.  I'm surprised he wasn't busy arresting people (Baltimore County's crime rate is soaring!).

Did you know that Ford stopped producing the Crown Victoria, the hallmark of the police fleet across the country?  I read that they received more orders for this car than they have for years (if ever) last year.  As it was the last year of their production, police departments wanted to stock up on them before they were gone.  Now units will have to either buy the Ford Taurus Police Interceptor, or the seemingly more popular Dodge Charger Police Interceptor.  Unfortunatley, the Charge is a Dodge and Chrysler is owned by Obama.

There were several flag corps, the Baltimore County Police department displaying the flags correctly:

And the United States Army displaying the flag incorrectly (he doesn't have his hands in the proper position AND the United States flag should be displayed higher than any accompanying flags.  This is why you should always give the United States flag to the tallest flag-bearer).

There were the usual politicians.  Here's big ole J.B. Jennings.  He's not much of a runner.  Though I heard a rumor that he gave Kobiashi a run for his money at last year's Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest in Coney Island.

Kathy Szeliga (Kathy Szeliga sells seashells by the seashore).

Maryland State Delegate Susan McComas and her "I'm more patriotic than you" outfit.

Rick Impallaria was there, but I didn't have my camera ready.  Andy Harris sent an entourage, but he must have been at a different parade.  Martin O'Malley - yeah, I don't think he's ever been to the Kingsville parade.  I think he hates people in Baltimore County.

There were the old farm tractors.  Every year there are two John Deere tractors, but this year there was also this McCormick Farmall.  Based on the boots, wife-beater, and cowboy hate, I suspect that this guy may be running for office in Harford County.

There were a few marching bands.  I found it interesting that the mostly Caucasian high schools have large marching bands, whereas the diverse high schools had much smaller marching bands.  Just an observation.  No judgement.  Here's the John Carroll Marching Band of Bel Air.

Then there were the fire trucks.  Kingsville Fire Department wants to expand.  They had banners on their firetrucks providing information about their fund raising efforts.  Here's their E-481 2005 American LeFrance Eagle.

Here's an aerial ladder, specifically the Peterbilt Tower 208, that serves the White Marsh Fire Department, which prior to 2003 was named the Cowenton Fire Department.

Anne Arundel County was proudly represented with their newest engine, their Ferndale Fireball 343.  I suspect this is a late 1950's Ward LeFrance Fireball Special.

Joppa-Magnolia got a new fire chief vehicle, this 2011/2012 (?) Chevy Tahoe.  I think it looks nice.  Their website isn't updated with the vehicle, so hey guys, update your apparatus page!

Finally, I grew up in Rosedale.  I remember the old Engine 2811973 Hahn Pumper truck flying through our neighborhood now and then.  Fortunately, they've upgraded, not only to a new station, but also to some newer vehicles, though this one is already 13 years old.  It's the Engine 281 1999 Spartan Luverne Pumper.  Still looks nice though.

Then there were a few older cars, same old cars from previous years.  Some Churches with their floats.  And that was basically it.  No clowns.  What's a parade without clowns?  (minus the politicians, of course)  It was a nice day to hang out with relatives in the morning.

We then spent the afternoon with some neighbors.  One of the guys in our neighborhood is selling his house after going through a divorce, but not after being underwater on his house by several tens (hundreds?) of thousands of dollars.  He said he spent $3,000 on fireworks.  He put on a good show.  Sent off some Chinese lanterns.  The police stopped by to let him know he had 5 minutes to finish his display or they were coming back.  Oh, sure.

And one last side note - a friend bought that new Bud Light Platinum.  I'm not a Budweiser fan because cheap beer always gives me a headache.  But this stuff wasn't too bad.  However, it's 8% alcohol, so after several of those, I had a headache.  So much for Bud Light.

How was your 4th of July?

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